Common name: Blue Ahli, Blue Hap, Electric Blue Ahli
Scientific name: Sciaenochromis Ahli, Cyrtocara Ahli, Haplochromis Ahli, Haplochromis Jacksoni
Average Adult Fish Size: 17cm / 7 Inches
Place of Origin: Lake Malawi
Typical Tank setup: Rocky Malawi tank with plenty of open swimming space.
Recommended Minimum Aquarium Capacity: 240 Litres
Compatibility: Other less aggressive african cichlids such as Haplochromis Cichlids like the Blue Dolphin Hap, Malawi Eye Biter, Red Finned Borleyi. Also Peacock Cichlids and synodontis catfish. The Blue Ahli is very aggressive and can hold its own with Mbunas.
Temperature: 23-28 Deg C / 73-82 Deg F
Water chemistry: pH 7.6-8.6
Feeding: Live; crustaceans, small fish, aquatic insects, insect larvae; tablets; pellets.
Sexing: Males are easy to sex past juvenile stage because males are bright blue and females remain grey.
Breeding: Eggs are fertilized externally before the female picks them up to brood in her mouth for a period of approximately two weeks. This protection makes it easy to breed them in a community tank. Move the female to a separate tank just before she releases the brood.
Additional Information: Blue Ahli are African Cichlids originating in Lake Malawi. They are also know as the Blue Hap, as they are Haplochromis Cichlids. The males turn the electric blue color. Females and juveniles are completely gray. Blue Ahli will eat flake foods, algae based flake foods and cichlid pellets. Do not feed them live worms, beefheart or live brine shrimp, as these can bloat and kill the fish. Blue Ahli are very territorial, aggressive fish. They need large swimming spaces, so a 90 gallon tank is recommended. Rocks and other hiding areas can be provided, however they traditionally stay away from the rocks due to fear of mbunas, like the Cobalt Blue Zebra, the Red Zebra or the Blue Johanni. Neverthess, Blue Ahlis can hold their own against mbunas. There should be little or no gravel in the tank. They enjoy plants, but will destroy them. A grouping including more than 10 haplochromis and peacock cichlids is recommended. Male Blue Ahli should not be combined, unless they have adequate hiding areas from each other. A single male with two or three females works quite well.